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2018 Common Ground Summit

The Classic Center
300 N Thomas St, Athens, GA

August 2  //  8:15 AM - 3:00 PM


The Georgia Conservancy's Common Ground Summit will bring together communities large and small interested in sustainable economic futures through conservation and outdoor recreation.

Funding mechanisms, land acquisitions, historic preservation, collaborations, partnerships, marketing - each community or initiative has a unique story to tell. The Common Ground Summit will feature morning and lunchtime keynote addresses, eight panel discussions and an afternoon workshop, providing attendees the opportunity to learn about the various approaches taken by communities, organizations and programs to forward a conservation and outdoor recreation-focused economy. Attendees will have the opportunity to network with Georgia’s leaders in conservation, local government and business throughout the day.


Registration

Registration to the 2018 Common Ground Summit is $50 per person and includes light breakfast and lunch.

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MORNING KeyNOte ADDRESSES

CHRIS CLARK  - PRESIDENT & CEO - GEORGIA CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

A Georgia native, Chris Clark is the President and CEO of the Georgia Chamber of Commerce. He received his bachelor’s degree from Georgia Southern University and his master’s degree in public administration from Georgia College and State University. Prior to joining the Georgia Chamber, Chris served as Commissioner of the Georgia Department of Natural Resources and as Deputy Commissioner for the Department of Economic Development. Before his state service, he was the President of the Fayette County Development Authority and CEO of the Hawkinsville-Pulaski County Chamber of Commerce.

Learn more about Chris Clark


Becky Kelley - Director - Georgia State Parks & Historic Sites

Becky Kelley was appointed Director of the Georgia Department of Natural Resources’ Parks, Recreation & Historic Sites Division in September 2002.  As director, she leads a resilient team of professional and part time staff and works with partners, volunteers and allied agents to oversees one of our nation’s most robust state park systems.

Learn more about Becky Kelley


Lunchtime Keynote Address

David Burt - Co-Founder, Village Green Consulting

Mr. Burt is an urban planning and real estate professional with over twenty years of experience in matters related to real estate market analysis, economic development, and commercial and residential property development.  He has diverse experience in both the public and private sectors with a strong background in downtown redevelopment efforts.  He has created financial proformas and investor packages for multiple mixed-use and adaptive re-use projects throughout the Southeast, managed the development of commercial and residential properties, and provided real estate market analysis for local governments as part of the planning process.  Mr. Burt has a Bachelor’s degree in Building Construction and a Master’s degree in City Planning, both from Georgia Tech.  In addition, he has a Certificate in Real Estate from Georgia State University.


 
 

Panel Discussions

The Common Ground Summit will feature four panel discussions that examine Georgia communities that are utilizing conservation and outdoor recreation to enhance their economic futures, and four panel discussions that examine regional or statewide programs or initiatives that marry conservation, land-use and/or ecology to the greater economic health of our state.

 Photo: The Path Foundation

Photo: The Path Foundation

Carrollton GreenBelt

Session One - 10 AM - Athena E
The newly unveiled 18-mile multi-use path in Carrollton connects economic centers, neighborhoods, schools and universities, as well as existing city parks and waterways. 

Learn more about this a panel and its panelists
 

 Photo: NationAl Park Service

Photo: NationAl Park Service

Exploring the Possibility for An Ocmulgee National Park & Preserve

Session One - 10 AM - Athena B/C
Efforts are well underway in the plan to expand the existing Ocmulgee National Monument and to investigate options for conserving a treasured natural and historical landscape along the Ocmulgee River between Macon to Hawkinsville.

Learn more about this panel and its panelists
 

 Photo: Alan Cressler

Photo: Alan Cressler

PorterDale & The Yellow river

Session Two - 11 AM - Athena E
A former mill town, Porterdale in Newton County is experiencing a renaissance through utilizing and enhancing existing resources, both natural and built.

Learn more about this a panel and its panelists
 

 Photo: City of Milton

Photo: City of Milton

Milton Greenspace Initiative

Session Three - 1 PM - Athena E
Voters from the City of Milton went to the ballot in 2016 to pass a local ballot referendum that will dedicate $25 million to public greenspace protection and expansion. 

Learn more about this panel and its panelists

 Photo: Phinizy Center for water sciences

Photo: Phinizy Center for water sciences

Nature Centers

Session Four - 2 PM - Athena B/C
Welcoming visitors both nearby and afar, nature centers provide communities with the educational lens through which to experience our local environments.

Learn more about this panel and its panelists
 

 Photo: Phuc DaO, The Georgia Conservancy

Photo: Phuc DaO, The Georgia Conservancy

The Wildlife Economy

Session Two - 11 AM - Athena B/C
Georgia’s wildlife – both game and non game- has a profound benefit to the economy through recreational activities like hunting, fishing and birding.  

Learn more about this panel and its panelists

 Photo: Explore Georgia

Photo: Explore Georgia

Agri-tourism

Session Four - 2 PM - Athena E
Known as an agricultural giant, Georgia's climate and varied geography provide for the diverse crops and unique landscapes that support this sector of our economy.

Learn more about this panel and its panelists
 

 Photo: Georgia State parks

Photo: Georgia State parks

Georgia State Parks

Session Three - 1 PM - Athena B/C
For many, our state parks provide an affordable, accessible way to experience Georgia's land and water. They are also the economic backbone for many communities.

Learn more about this panel and its panelists

 
 
 

If you have any questions regarding the Common Ground Summit, please email Georgia Conservancy Communications Director Brian Foster at bfoster@gaconservancy.org